With more snow forecast for Wednesday, the following is an extract from “The Observer’s Book of Weather’ by Mr Lester F.R Met. Soc. Published in 1955.
“In the British Isles snow is more frequent at the latter part of winter and early spring, and this is because there is a greater tendency for easterly winds from the Contingent to bring in the coldest weather around February and March.
Severe snow-storms can often be very local. We have had examples in southern England, with blizzards depositing a foot or more in snow in, say, one part of Kent, and places a few miles away without any snow at all. The explanation for this is that the heaviest falls occur along the continental side of a 'warm front', which in this country, of course, is the southeastern side. The snow rapidly decreases in amount on the opposite side of the front.
We often hear it said that it is 'too cold for snow'. Actually, it can never be too cold to snow, but when the temperature falls low in the British Isles it is generally during an anticyclone, or fine weather spell, and with the oncoming depression, the temperature rises…..
….Although snow is associated with Christmas in the northern hemisphere and is a regular feature of Christmas cards and stories, weather statistics prove that snow rarely falls in Christmas week. The Greenwich records show that, over a period of 83 years, snow has fallen on Christmas Day on only six occasions, and on Boxing Day on ten occasions. Only twice has it snowed on Christmas Eve. These figures apply to southern England only, but even in the Midlands and north of England it is more usual to have a 'green' than a 'white' Christmas.”